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Job Details

Physical Therapist Clinical Specialist

Company name
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs - Agency Wide

$73,375.00 to $95,388.00

Iowa City, IA

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3 hit(s)  


Open & closing dates





$73,375 to $95,388 per year

Pay scale & grade

GS 12

Work schedule


Appointment type



2 vacancies in the following location:

Iowa City, IA

Relocation expenses reimbursed


This job is open to

The public

U.S. citizens, nationals or those who owe allegiance to the U.S., and excepted service employees.


Announcement number


Control number





OUR MISSION: To fulfill President Lincoln's promise - To care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow, and his orphan - by serving and honoring the men and women who are America's Veterans. How would you like to become a part of a team providing compassionate care to Veterans?

As an Orthopedic Clinical Specialist assigned to Primary Care, the physical therapist allows for direct Veteran access to musculoskeletal care in Primary Care and serves as subject matter expert and role model for other members of the health care team by coordinating and triaging care for Veterans who present to Primary Care with musculoskeletal complaints. The physical therapist performs evaluation and treatment of patients in Primary Care as well as coordinates this program through communication with multiple disciplines including PACT, ER, Radiology, Orthopedics, Prosthetics and Social Work. The physical therapist is expected to carry out additional assignments and could be assigned to any area in the Physical Therapy Section as needed, but serves as subject matter expert at least 95% of the time in Primary Care.

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Primary function is direct access to patient care for musculoskeletal evaluations, triage, and treatment as indicated by a physical therapist. Duties include extensive and thorough direct access Orthopedic evaluations followed by clinical decision making that guides triage to other disciplines for testing or intervention as needed. Documentation, assistive device training and dispersion, Tens unit instruction as well as provider and patient/family education are also duties assigned to this setting. The population served includes young adults and geriatric patients (with physical, cognitive, psychiatric disabilities) who present to Primary Care with musculoskeletal complaints.

Work Schedule: Full Time, Monday-Friday 7:30am-4:00pm

Financial Disclosure Report: Not Required

Travel Required

Not required

Supervisory status


Who May Apply

This job is open to…

United States Citizens

Questions? This job is open to 1 group.

Job family (Series)

0633 Physical Therapist

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Therapists, Physical



Conditions of Employment

You must be a U.S. Citizen to apply for this job

Designated and/or random drug testing may be required

Selective Service Registration is required for males born after 12/31/1959

You may be required to serve a probationary period

Subject to a background/security investigation

Must be proficient in written and spoken English

Physical Requirements: Heavy lifting, 45 pounds and over, Straight pulling (1-2 hours), Pushing (1-2 hours)' Use of fingers, both hands required, Reaching above shoulder, Walking (2-4 hours), Standing (2-3 hours), Kneeling (1-2 hours), Repeated bending (1-2 hours), Prolonged sitting (2-4 hours), climbing, legs only (1 hour), Both legs required (1 prosthetic), Ability for rapid mental and muscular coordination simultaneously, Driving required in job, Near vision correctable at 13 to 16 to Jaegar 1 to 4, Far vision correctable in one eye to 20/20 and to 20/40 in the other, Depth perception, ability to distinguish basic colors, Ability to distinguished shades of colors, Hearing (aid permitted), and Mental and emotional stability. The physical requirements for this position in accordance with HRML No. 05-12-02, Employment of People with Disabilities, Including Under Schedule A, 5 CFR 213.3102(u).

Selected applicants will be required to complete an online onboarding process.


Basic Requirements:

United States Citizenship: Non-citizens may only be appointed when it is not possible to recruit qualified citizens in accordance with VA Policy.

a. Citizenship. Citizen of the United States

b. Education

(1) Degree. Graduate from a degree program in physical therapy from an approved college or university approved by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). The CAPTE is the only accreditation agency recognized by the United States Department of Education (USDE) and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) to accredit entry-level physical therapy programs.

NOTE: Effective, January 1, 2002, CAPTE changed its scope of accrediting activities of PT education programs to include only those programs that culminate in post-baccalaureate degrees.

(2) Foreign Graduates. Graduates of foreign physical therapy programs meet the requirements if they have a full unrestricted and current license to practice physical therapy in a State, Territory or Commonwealth (i.e., Puerto Rico) of the United States, or in the District of Columbia.

c. Licensure. Current, full, active, and unrestricted license to practice physical therapy in a State, Territory or Commonwealth (i.e., Puerto Rico) of the United States, or in the District of Columbia.

d. English Language Proficiency. Physical Therapists must be proficient in spoken and written English as required by VA Handbook 5005.

Preferred Experience: 2 years of strong Orthopedic experience.

Grade Determinations: Creditable Experience

(a) Knowledge of Contemporary Professional Physical Therapy Practice. To be creditable, experience must have demonstrated possession of the required knowledge, skills, abilities and other characteristics associated with the scope of physical therapy practice as outlined in the current Guide to Physical Therapist Practice, American Physical Therapy Association, and the Normative Model of Physical Therapist Education. The experience may have been evidenced by one or more of the following:

1. Active professional practice. (Active professional practice means paid/non-paid employment as a professional PT as defined by APTA or the appropriate licensing board.) Experience gained after graduation but prior to licensure is creditable provided the candidate was utilized as a graduate PT and subsequently passed the licensure examination.

2. In addition to licensure, applicants must demonstrate completion of a minimum of 15 continuing education units (CEUs) recognized by APTA or the appropriate licensing board.

3. Completion of a post-graduate fellowship or a post-graduate residency program may substitute for creditable experience on a year for year basis.

(b) Quality of Experience. Experience is only creditable if it was earned post degree and meets the following:

1. Work as a graduate PT directly related to the position to be filled; and

2. The work to be credited is at a level comparable to physical therapy experience at the same or next lower grade level than the grade level being considered for placement.

(c) Part-time Experience. Part-time experience as a graduate PT is credited according to its relationship to the full-time workweek. For example, a PT employed 20 hours a week, or on a 1/2-time basis, would receive 1 full-time workweek of credit for each 2 weeks of service.

(d) Board Certification. Board certification means having successfully passed a Board Certification examination administered by the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties (ABPTS).

(e) Content Specialty. Specialized content areas of physical therapy include, but are not limited to, geriatrics, neurology, cardiopulmonary, orthopedics, electrophysiology, diabetes, sports medicine, spinal cord injury, amputee, wound care, stroke, brain injury and arthritis.

(f) Post-graduate Fellowships. According to the APTA, a post graduate fellowship is A post-professional, funded, and planned learning experience in a focused area of PT clinical practice, education, or research (not infrequently post-doctoral, post-residency prepared or board-certified physical therapists).

(g) Post-graduate Residency. According to the APTA, a post-graduate residency is A planned program of post-professional clinical and didactic education that is designed to advance significantly the physical therapist's preparation as a provider of patient care services in a defined area of clinical practice.

Grade Determination. In addition to the basic requirements for appointment, the following criteria must be used when determining the appropriate grade assignment of candidates.

GS-12 Physical Therapist

(a) Education, Experience and Licensure. In addition to the basic requirements, completion of a minimum of 1 year of progressively complex experience equivalent to the next lower grade level. Generally, assignments at this grade level require the knowledge, skills, and competencies normally acquired through post-graduate residency or fellowship training programs. In addition to fully meeting Knowledge, Skill and Abilities (KSAs) identified at the GS-11 full performance level, the candidate must also demonstrate the KSAs required for the specific assignment.

GS-12 Clinical Specialist. The individual is assigned responsibility for serving as the subject matter expert in a content specialty area and as a consultant to physical therapy and other medical center staff in evaluating and treating patients in the specialty area. Special clinical programs include, but are not limited to poly-trauma, orthopedics, geriatrics, neurology, traumatic brain injury, cardiopulmonary, stroke, electrophysiology, diabetes, wound care, arthritis, spinal cord injury, or amputee. Clinical Specialists generally would be found in Complexity Level 1 (High Complexity) or Level 2 (Medium Complexity) facilities, or practice at a facility designated as a Polytrauma Support Clinic Team, Polytrauma Network Site, or Polytrauma Rehabilitation Center. Clinical specialists may also practice in facilities of lesser complexity levels where an applicable specialty area exists (i.e. - a facility where coordinated rehabilitation services are provided on a long term care unit may have the need for a Geriatric Clinical Specialist). In addition to completion of 1 year of progressively difficult experience comparable to the next lower grade level, PTs assigned to this position must fully demonstrate the following KSAs:

a. Advanced knowledge and expert skill in a range of specialized interventions and treatment modalities used in a specialized treatment area of physical therapy. Such knowledge typically would be acquired through a minimum 2 years clinical experience in the specialty area, or a Board Certification in the specialty area, completion of a clinical residency or fellowship program, or by obtaining an advanced degree in a related field.

b. Ability to serve as a consultant for health care providers regarding the delivery of care within a specialized area of physical therapy.

c. Ability to teach and mentor medical center staff in a specialized area of physical therapy.

d. Ability to guide and evaluate the work of a multi-disciplinary team in a specialized area of physical therapy.

e. Advanced skill to perform and interpret specialized evaluative procedures and tests in evaluating the treatment outcomes in the assigned specialty area.

References: VA Handbook 5005/24, Part II, Appendix G12 dated February 18, 2009


IMPORTANT: A transcript must be submitted with your application if you are basing all or part of your qualifications on education.

Note: Only education or degrees recognized by the U.S. Department of Education from accredited colleges, universities, schools, or institutions may be used to qualify for Federal employment. You can verify your education here:

. If you are using foreign education to meet qualification requirements, you must send a Certificate of Foreign Equivalency with your transcript in order to receive credit for that education. For further information, visit:

Additional information

This job opportunity announcement may be used to fill additional vacancies.

It is the policy of the VA to not deny employment to those that have faced financial hardships or periods of unemployment.

This position is in the Excepted Service and does not confer competitive status.

United States Citizenship Required; non-citizens may only be appointed when it is not possible to recruit qualified citizens in accordance with VA Policy.

VA encourages persons with disabilities to apply. The health related positions in VA are covered by Title 38, and are not covered by the Schedule A excepted appointment authority.

Veterans and Transitioning Service Members: Please visit the VA for Vets

site for career-search tools for Veterans seeking employment at VA, career development services for our existing Veterans, and coaching and reintegration support for military service members.

If you are unable to apply online or need to fax a document you do not have in electronic form, view the following link for information regarding an Alternate Application

How You Will Be Evaluated

You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.

IN DESCRIBING YOUR EXPERIENCE, PLEASE BE CLEAR AND SPECIFIC. WE MAY NOT MAKE ASSUMPTIONS REGARDING YOUR EXPERIENCE. Your application, résumé, C.V., and/or supporting documentation will be verified. Please follow all instructions carefully. Errors or omissions may affect consideration for employment.

NOTE: The Professional Standards Board (a peer-review group) will review the selected candidate's education and experience and recommend the grade and salary at which the candidate will be placed. For internal selectees eligible for promotion, the board will determine grade and HR will determine step in accordance with policy.

Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religions; spiritual; community; student; social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.

Background checks and security clearance

Security clearance


Required Documents

Required Documents

To apply for this position, you must provide a complete Application Package which includes:


VA Form 10-2850c Application for Associated Health Occupations can be found at:

The following documents are accepted, and may be required if applicable to your eligibility and/or qualifications for this position. Please use this checklist

to ensure you have included all documents required for your application, such as a copy of your transcript (if using education to qualify), SF-50's, documentation to support Veterans Preference or ICTAP/CTAP documentation (for displaced Federal employees).

Cover Letter



Other Veterans Document





Veterans' Preference: When applying for Federal Jobs, eligible Veterans should claim preference for 5pt (TP), 10pt (CP/CPS/XP), or for Sole Survivor Preference (SSP) in the questionnaire. You must provide a legible copy of your DD214(s) which shows dates and character of service (honorable, general, etc.). If you are currently serving on active duty and expect to be released or discharged within 120 days you must submit documentation related to your active duty service which reflects the dates of service, character of service (honorable, general, etc.), and dates of impending separation. Additionally, disabled veterans and others eligible for 10-point preference (such as widows or mothers of eligible Veterans) must also submit an SF-15 Application for 10 Point Veteran Preference with required proof as stated on the form. Documentation is required to award preference. For more information on Veterans' Preference, please visit

If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:

Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education

Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating.



A career with the U.S. Government provides employees with a comprehensive benefits package. As a federal employee, you and your family will have access to a range of benefits that are designed to make your federal career very rewarding.

Benefits for federal employees

Healthcare insurance

Pay and leave

Review our benefits

Eligibility for benefits depends on the type of position you hold and whether your position is full-time, part-time, or intermittent. Contact the hiring agency for more information on the specific benefits offered.

How to Apply

How to Apply

All applicants are encouraged to apply online. To apply for this position, you must complete the full questionnaire and submit the documentation specified in the Required Documents section below. The complete application package must be submitted by 11:59 PM (ET) on 01/25/2018 to receive consideration.

To begin, click Apply Online to create a USAJOBS account or log in to your existing account. Follow the prompts to select your USA JOBS resume and/or other supporting documents and complete the occupational questionnaire.

Click Submit My Answers to submit your application package.

NOTE: It is your responsibility to ensure your responses and appropriate documentation is submitted prior to the closing date.

To verify your application is complete, log into your USA JOBS account,

, select the Application Status link and then select the more information link for this position. The Details page will display the status of your application, the documentation received and processed, and any correspondence the agency has sent related to this application. Your uploaded documents may take several hours to clear the virus scan process. To return to an incomplete application, log into your USA JOBS account and click Update Application in the vacancy announcement. You must re-select your resume and/or other documents from your USA JOBS account or your application will be incomplete.

Agency contact information

Catherine Stepper


(319) 338-0581 X7747



Iowa City VA Health Care System

610 Highway 6 West

Iowa City, IA


Learn more about this agency

Next steps

Once your online application is submitted you will receive a confirmation notification by email. After we receive application packages (including all required documents) and the vacancy announcement closes, we will review applications to ensure qualification and eligibility requirements are met. After the review is complete, a referral certificate(s) is issued and applicants will be notified of their status by email. Referred applicants will be notified as such and may be contacted directly by the hiring office for an interview. All referred applicants receive a final notification once a selection decision has been made.

You may check the status of your application at any time by logging into your USA Jobs account and clicking on Applications. Information regarding your application status can be found in the U


Help Center

Fair & Transparent

Fair & Transparent

The Federal hiring process is setup to be fair and transparent. Please read the following guidance.

Equal Employment Opportunity Policy

The United States Government does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy and gender identity), national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, genetic information, age, membership in an employee organization, retaliation, parental status, military service, or other non-merit factor.

Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) for federal employees & job applicants

Reasonable Accommodation Policy

Federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. Applicants requiring reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process should contact the hiring agency directly. Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.

A reasonable accommodation is any change to a job, the work environment, or the way things are usually done that enables an individual with a disability to apply for a job, perform job duties or receive equal access to job benefits.

Under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodations when: An applicant with a disability needs an accommodation to have an equal opportunity to apply for a job.

An employee with a disability needs an accommodation to perform the essential job duties or to gain access to the workplace.

An employee with a disability needs an accommodation to receive equal access to benefits, such as details, training, and office-sponsored events.

You can request a reasonable accommodation at any time during the application or hiring process or while on the job. Requests are considered on a case-by-case basis.

Learn more about disability employment and reasonable accommodations

or how to contact an agency.

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Financial suitability

Social security number request

Privacy Act

Signature and false statements

Selective Service

New employee probationary period

Note: We cannot accept applications on behalf of Federal Agencies. Application instructions are listed within the Job Description.

Company info

U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs - Agency Wide
Website :

Company Profile
The Veterans Health Administration is home to the United States’ largest integrated health care system consisting of 152 medical centers, nearly 1,400 community-based outpatient clinics, community living centers, Vet Centers and Domiciliaries. Together these health care facilities and the more than 53,000 independent licensed health care practitioners who work within them provide comprehensive care to more than 8.3 million* Veterans each year.

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